We all know that Jewish grandmothers are a wealth of invaluable knowledge (and guilt): how to make the best brisket, where to find the best shoe sales and all the medical advice you never really wanted.
With New Year’s Eve approaching, I decided to poll some of my friends and friends’ grandmothers and friends who are actually grandmothers (hey – I’m not age-ist) to get some Jewish advice on how to best avoid or cure a hangover.
The Pickle Approach
In several Jewish traditions from around the world, pickled vegetables are common not just for aiding digestion but also for bringing you back to life after a few too many drinks. And this is especially true in the Russian tradition. My friend Yevgeniya’s grandfather swears that both pickle juice and black currant juice are cure-alls after too much vodka (and tequila and beer).
Jeffrey Yoskowitz of The Gefilteria also agrees on the topic of pickles as a hangover cure. “Lacto-fermented pickles and brine is the built-in Jewish hangover cure. And when you use the brine for Bloody Marys it really works!”
Soup It Up
Several friends and relatives (and also maybe some science experts) assert that chicken soup (or any broth-y soup) isn’t just for curing a cold: It’s also perfect for a hangover. Dehydration is the cause for hangovers, and so chicken soup helps rehydrate and reintroduce salt into the body — your body needs those electrolytes it lost. So before your next night of unchained drinking, make sure you order some soup for the next morning or defrost some from the freezer.
Have a Little Bubbly
Jews are obsessed with seltzer, did you know? And seltzer will help rehydrate your body, plus those bubbles may help to settle any upset tummies. You might be wise to pair a tall glass of seltzer with an everything bagel, cream cheese and lox for good measure. Just saying.
One of my favorite grandmas and food experts, Ronnie Fein, says to get moving! Get outside and take a brisk walk. Solid advice for many ailments.
One of the most common hangovers cures is to drink more, and the Jewish tradition is no different. Another approach from the Israelis is Tubi 60, a liqueur made in Israel that’s popular in clubs because it’s purportedly hangover-proof. Guess I know what’s on my agenda for the next trip to Israel, for purely scientific research purposes of course.